Near 100% Diffraction Efficiency and High Net-gain in a Photorefractive Polymer

N. Peyghambarian, K. Meerholz, B. Volodin, Sandalphon, and B. Kippelen, Optical Sciences Center, and A. Padias and H. Hall, Department of Chemistry, University of Arizona, Tucson,

Photorefractive (PR) polymers are new materials1-4 with many potential photonic applications, including dynamic holographic storage and image processing. They offer structural flexibility, ease of processing, a superior figure of merit compared with commonly used inorganic crystals, and low cost. We have developed a photorefractive polymer composite with significantly enhanced diffraction efficiency and two-beam-coupling gain.5 For the first time, near complete diffraction of an incident beam can be observed in a 105-μm thin photorefractive polymer film using a low-power laser diode. The material also exhibits a net two-beam coupling gain of more than 200 cm-1.

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